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Ms. Johnson Guides Students "Back to the Beginning"
February 8th, 2016
Written by Golden Lines Staff Writer: Sarah Van Duser '18
When you walk past theology teacher Ms. Theresa Johnson’s classroom on Thursday afternoons and see students talking and laughing, it may look like a typical club meeting, but in actuality the group is lined two-by-two to get on Noah’s Ark... Figuratively, of course.
These students are members of the Walk Thru the Old Testament Club, which meets five times each semester. The spring session will begin on Thursday, February 11 and run through March 10.
Students not only learn about the Old Testament with Ms. Johnson but also receive all five works of mercy if they attend each hour-long meeting.
Due to her stroke in 2011, Ms. Johnson thought that starting the club would be a good way to “practice my skills with small groups, to gain in strength and stamina and to offer students a way to fulfill their works of mercy for that school year.”
The 14 participants in the fall 2016 session covered the storyline, setting and structure of the 46 books in the Old Testament through the use of hand signs, puns, stories and cartoons.
A typical meeting starts after the students sign-in and grab a small snack. “In the first session, I presented the worldwide impact of Walk Thru the Bible ministries,” Ms. Johnson said. “In each successive session, we reviewed what we learned the week before and build on it.” At the end of the five sessions, students wrote a brief evaluation and returned their materials.
Many participants benefitted in their own way. Sophomore Ansley Reese enjoyed “getting to be more familiar with the Old Testament and the other people in my class.” Similarly, sophomore Brennan Quinn was fond of “spending time with friends and learning about God.” For sophomore Tommy King, “The hand movements made it easier to retain information we learned,” he said with a smile.
Each participant had their own reason for joining. Reese said she wanted to gain more knowledge in the subject. “I felt like I didn’t know enough about the Old Testament and I wanted to learn about it from a teacher,” she said. “It also reinforced the material taught in our Hebrew Scriptures class.”
Sophomore Taylor Bruce was striving for straight A’s and “thought it would help me remember the Old Testament for my Hebrew Scriptures class.”
According to Ms. Johnson, “The seminar’s ultimate goal is to acquaint students with the Bible and to have them fall in love with the Word of God and the loving God who inspired these Scriptures.”
Ms. Johnson’s personal hope for the students is that they “continue to read and reflect on Scripture throughout their lives.” She welcomes everyone and encourages students from all grades to join the Walk Thru the Old Testament Club.